Another man was sentenced on June 16 in 12th Judicial District Court in Avoyelles Parish for his part in the cutting down of trees on the Spring Bayou Wildlife Management Area (WMA).
Judge William Bennett sentenced Allen Gaspard, 62, of Marksville, to serve two years in jail suspended, to pay $20,000 in civil restitution to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF), $400 in court costs and $250 for criminal court fund. Gaspard was also given five years of probation during which time he will not be allowed on any WMA and not allowed to possess recreational hunting or fishing licenses.
Gaspard is the second man convicted for the cutting down of trees in an effort to block navigation to hunting areas on the Spring Bayou WMA. Keith Savoy, 49, of Hessmer, was found guilty on March 2 and sentenced on April 11 in 2016.
Judge William Bennett sentenced Savoy to serve two years in jail suspended, to pay $15,000 in civil restitution to LDWF, $2,500 fine, $750 for the cost of prosecution and $400 in court costs. Savoy was also given five years of probation during which time he will not be allowed on any WMA and not allowed to possess recreational hunting or fishing licenses.
Savoy and Gaspard cut over 100 trees in December of 2014 in the northeast corner of Spring Bayou WMA to block navigable access to an area known as the “fields” where they regularly hunted. The trees Savoy and Gaspard cut down ranged from 10 inches to 30 inches in diameter and up to 50 foot tall including cypress, oak and willow trees.
LDWF agents arrested Savoy in March of 2015 and Gaspard in October of 2015 for criminal damage to state property.
Avoyelles District Attorney Charles Riddle and Assistant District Attorney Tony Salario prosecuted the cases.
Agents involved in the case are Lt. John Volentine, Sgts. Gabe Guidry, Chad Watts and Bear Fletcher, and Senior Agents Doug Anderson Jr., Jay Callegari, Heath Wood, Kurt Hatten, Dale Wheat, Kenny Robertson and John Hattaway. Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office Deputy Matthew Smith and Detective Jeremiah Honea also assisted in the case.